June 6, 1997 in Seven

‘Lost World’ Certain To Gobble Up Consumer Dollars

Suzanne Condie Lambert Contra Costa Times
 

So, you’re one of the five people who still hasn’t seen “The Lost World,” the “Jurassic Park” sequel that threatens to pulverize box-office records, flood your home with Burger King watches and perhaps leave you permanently deaf

Well, here’s my one piece of unsolicited advice: Remember going to “Jurassic Park.” Remember the screaming, the yelling, the dino-critters disemboweling everything that grows hair. Remember the kid in peril, Jeff Goldblum’s sarcastic chaos theorist (really, is there another kind?), the self-righteous warnings about tinkering with nature. And the lame, contrived ending. Don’t forget that. Get these images in your brain, and then hold them for, say, 134 minutes.

Congratulations: You’ve just saved yourself six or seven bucks and the need to see “The Lost Plot,” er, “The Lost World.”

But you’ll probably go anyway, if you haven’t already, because if you don’t, you’ll have nothing to talk about at the office. And you’d probably wind up ostracized from the group, nodding mutely in the lunchroom to that guy from payroll who buttons his slightly too small shirt all the way to the top and has a bumper sticker on his car that reads “Star Fleet Academy, Class of ‘97.”

(Please, no calls from the “Trek” community. I like “Star Trek.” Really. But when you spend half your waking hours attempting to re-create a culture that has never existed outside a sound stage, you’re asking for some ribbin’.)

Anyway, where were we? Right. We were trying to discern why anyone would want to clone a movie about cloning, then pass it off as a new product - well, besides the fact that doing so will probably net the producers more money than is currently in circulation. A whole new currency denomination will have to be invented just to cover the video sales. Heck, we might as well just send our house deeds, car registration slips and tax-refund checks to Universal right now because, by fall, its accounts-receivable department is going to own every human being in North America and parts of Europe.

And there’s also the angle that the guys in marketing probably really relate to vicious reptilian monsters who feast on living flesh while crushing the small and helpless beings that surround them.

(Please, no calls from outraged marketing guys. I like to kid marketing guys. My brother Mike is going to school to be a marketing guy.)

So, OK, I can understand why this film was made. But didn’t we see enough dinosaurs the first time around? Heck, there are plenty of prehistoric horrors the filmmakers could have mined: woolly mammoths, giant sloths, Morley Safer’s suits, ABC’s programming department, the wheat puffs in my grandma’s cupboard, the appeal of “Mama’s Family,” Dom DeLuise’s career; my salary. See, the options are endless.

But the movie wasn’t completely worthless. It did reinforce several safety tips that we just can’t emphasize enough:

Never, ever try to pet the baby of something large enough to smash you with a flick of its powerful tail. Our heroine scientist does this, and evolution immediately insists that she be eaten before she can reproduce.

If you are ever cast in a movie, remember: The more you resemble a potato, the more likely you are to be killed early in the film.

When surrounded by a jungle full of creatures that just might consider you part of a well-balanced breakfast, the urge for bathroom privacy doesn’t seem that important after all.

If you ever decide to visit a Central American island chain inhabited by resurrected monsters, make sure someone knows where you’re going and when you’re expected back. This also works for Jeep rides into the desert or window-shopping at Nordstrom.

Weasel management types, when faced with spending time around dinosaurs, should delegate, delegate, delegate. Nobody likes to hang out with cold-blooded creatures that exist to suck the life from other living beings.


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